Creating and sharing knowledge for telecommunications

Susana Sargento honored with Femina Prize 2020 for merit in Science

by IT on 24-12-2020
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Susana Sargento, senior IT researcher and leading expert in IoT networks, has been awarded the Femina Prize 2020 for distinguished merit in Science: Relevant Research.


The Femina Prize, now celebrating its 10th anniversary, is a national award recognized by the Ministry of Culture with the Statute of Cultural Interest. It honors Portuguese Women who have distinguished themselves with professional, cultural, and humanitarian merit, either in Portugal or abroad.


“It is a great pleasure and a great honor to receive this award!", Susana said. "It represents a great recognition not only for me, but mainly for the people with whom I have been fortunate to work, and who have helped me to deploy our new solutions in a technological laboratory that includes cities and citizens”.


With 20-plus years’ experience in telecommunications research, Susana Sargento is a Full Professor at the University of Aveiro (UA) and coordinator of IT’s Network Architectures and Protocols group. She holds more than 400 publications, six patents, and is the winner of the EU Prize for Women Innovators 2016.


“I am so privileged, because I work in what makes me happy, and I am even recognized for my work. For two decades I have been working on research and development of solutions for the Internet of the future, which allows everyone and everything to be connected: people, sensors, cars, drones, and much more. The best thing about this work is the fact that we always keep in mind what these solutions allow us to create: new services for citizens to improve their lives”, she added.


Over the years, Susana Sargento has worked closely with telecom operators, manufacturers and public entities to develop innovative and advanced networking technology solutions.


In 2012, she co-founded a vehicular networking company — Veniam — a spin-off of the Universities of Aveiro, Porto and IT, which builds a seamless, low-cost networking platform that connects infrastructures, people and moving things to each other, addressing the growing challenges of rapid urbanization. Today, Veniam has offices in Portugal, the US and Singapore.


Susana was also involved in the European project FUTURE-CITIES, in which she was co-responsible for implementing a vehicular network testbed with buses and trucks, and several fixed stations, throughout the city of Porto. At this time, the network counts more than 600 vehicles across the city.


At the moment, and within the scope of the European project Aveiro STEAM City, Susana is responsible for the construction of a multi-technology communication infrastructure in Aveiro, to support innovative services in the area of mobility, environment and energy. 


She is also co-coordinator in the Research Axis of INCoDe.2030 (a national digital competences initiative), she belongs to the evaluation committee of the Fundo200M government co-investment fund, and is the Scientific Director of CMU-Portugal Program. Susana is also an evaluator of proposals and projects in European research programs.


The Femina Prize is awarded by Matriz Portuguesa, a non-profit institution promoting the development of national culture and knowledge. The honorees are selected by an Honor Commission, which includes João Micael (founder of the Femina Prize), Delmar Maia Gonçalves (Chairman of the General Assembly of Matriz Portuguesa), Angélica Santos (member of Matriz Portuguesa), as well as the Portuguese Minister of Culture, Graça Fonseca.